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09: Putting User Innovation to Work

Breakout / Working Group
english language

Would you like to design your own furniture or make suggestions for an event? It’s not a long way off: user-centred innovation is a paradigm shift accelerated by new information and communication technologies. By involving their users in the innovation process, organisations achieve superior results in their renewal, product development and customer loyalty. But how does it work in practice? After a short input on user innovation and its tools, practitioners will give insights into their experiences and possible pitfalls. Finally, we invite you to participate in a user innovation process using the European Forum Alpbach as a practical example.


Professor and Director, Institute for Strategy, Technology and Organization, WU (Vienna University of Economics and Business), Vienna
Chief Technologist and Business Development Executive Mobile, IBM Austria, Vienna
Managing Director, European Forum Alpbach, Vienna
Foresight and Innovation Consultant, Paris Chair

Dr. Christopher LETTL

Professor and Director, Institute for Strategy, Technology and Organization, WU (Vienna University of Economics and Business), Vienna

1993-1998 University of Hamburg
1999-2000 Lecturer, WU (Vienna University of Economics and Business)
2000-2003 Lecturer, Doctoral Student, Hamburg University of Technology
2003 Doctoral Degree in Business Administration, Hamburg University of Technology
2003-2006 Assistant, Associate Professor (wissenschaftlicher Assistent & Privatdozent), Berlin University of Technology
2006 Habilitation in Business Administration
2006-2009 Full Professor, Chair of Technology and Innovation Management, Aarhus School of Business, University of Aarhus
2009-2014 WU (Vienna University of Economics and Business)

Dipl.-Ing. Helmut LUDWAR

Chief Technologist and Business Development Executive Mobile, IBM Austria, Vienna

 Zuständig für Forschungs- & Entwicklungsprojekte sowie Kundeninnovationen. Er studierte industrielle Elektronik und Regelungstechnik und hat über 20 Jahre Erfahrung in unterschiedlichen IT-Bereichen von Projektgeschäften, IT-Architektur, Vertrieb bis hin zu Business Development und Innovations-Management. Schwerpunkte seiner Tätigkeit waren unter anderem die Mitentwicklung des IBM Information Frameworks in Forschungszentren in der USA, Schweiz und Irland; Planung und Umsetzung von IT-Architekturen zur Systemerneuerung und die Erschließung von neuen Geschäftsfeldern mit Telematik-Lösungen.

M.Sc. Philippe NARVAL

Managing Director, European Forum Alpbach, Vienna

1994-1996 Scholarship holder/Student, Lester B. Pearson United World College, Victoria
1996-1997 National Service/Gedenkdienst, Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial, Jerusalem
1997-1998 Community Service Coordinator, American International School, Cochabamba
1998-2003 BA, King's College, London
2000-2001 Exchange Year, Universidade de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte
2003-2004 Exhibition Coordinator, Künstlerhaus Wien
2004-2005 Programme Manager, Concordia, Chisinau
2005-2010 Programme Officer, Light for the World, Vienna
2010-2011 MSc, University of Oxford
since 2012 Managing Director, European Forum Alpbach, Vienna

Mag. Martin MAYER

Foresight and Innovation Consultant, Paris

2002-2006 Change Agent, ÖBB - Austrian Railways, Vienna
2006-2007 Senior Advisor, International Union of Railways, Paris
2007-2011 Strategy and Innovation Consultant, Head of Innovation Practice, PMP - Performance Management Partner, Paris
since 2011 Independent Foresight and Innovation Consultant
since 2013 Founder, YouMeO (

Economic Symposium

show timetable


14:00 - 14:10OpeningPlenary
14:10 - 15:40New Goals for the EconomyPlenary
16:10 - 17:40The End of Conventional WisdomPlenary
17:40 - 18:00Political CornerPlenary
18:30 - 19:30Umverteile und herrsche. Wem gehört der Wohlstand?Partner
20:00 - 21:30Learning from the Care EconomyPlenary
21:30 - 22:30Smart Blue HourSocial
22:30 - 23:45Cello Goes Tango or Cello Goes South AmericaCulture


08:00 - 08:4514th management club Business Breakfast "Österreich braucht Europa"Partner
09:00 - 10:10Global Division of Labour - How Can Europe Prosper?Plenary
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 01: Hayek vs Keynes: The Most Important Liberal EconomistsBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 02: A New Economic and Competition Model for EuropeBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 03: Critical Success Factors of Entrepreneurial EducationBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 04: Intellectual Property - A System at the Crossroads?Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 05: US Focus Back on Industry - Blessing or Curse for Europe?Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 06: Clash of Generations - Corporate Cultures Put to the Test by New Working EnvironmentsBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 07: Re-IndustrialisationBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 08: Work to Live, or Live to Work? - Changing Working EnvironmentsBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 09: Putting User Innovation to WorkBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 10: The Future of Corporate Learning - What Makes Businesses Successful?Breakout
12:10 - 12:30Political CornerPlenary
13:30 - 14:30Lunch ReceptionSocial
14:30 - 17:00Breakout Session 11: The EU's Energy and Climate Policy - A Threat to Our Industries?Breakout
14:30 - 17:00Breakout Session 12: Inequality Before and After the Financial CrisisBreakout
14:30 - 17:00Breakout Session 13: Schengen for Data: What Is Necessary, What Is Feasible?Breakout
14:30 - 17:00Breakout Session 14: Good Is the Enemy of Great - What Distinguishes Leading Enterprises from Others?Breakout
14:30 - 17:00Breakout Session 15: Room for CreativityBreakout
14:30 - 17:00Breakout Session 16: Business Development Based on Design ThinkingBreakout
14:30 - 17:00Breakout Session 17: The Key to Innovation - People, Mindset, TechnologiesBreakout
14:30 - 17:00Breakout Session 18: Sharing Economy - Cooperatives in the 21st CenturyBreakout
14:30 - 17:00Breakout Session 19: The Economic Future of EuropeBreakout
14:30 - 17:00Breakout Session 20: From Wallet to Smartphone - Challenges and Opportunities of the Digital World of FinanceBreakout
18:00 - 19:30Peter Drucker Special Lecture: Property or Communities? The Upcoming Challenge for CompaniesPlenary
21:00 - 22:00Don't Mind the GapCulture


Magenta NightSocial


08:00 - 09:00Breakfast Club 01: In Conversation with: Alexa L. WesnerPartner
08:00 - 09:00Breakfast Club 02: In Conversation with: Franz FischlerPartner
08:30 - 09:00"Kater" BreakfastPartner
09:00 - 10:00The Economy According to the MediaPlenary
10:00 - 10:30Cooperation in EuropePlenary
11:00 - 12:20Europe's Economy and the Next GenerationPlenary
12:20 - 12:30ClosingPlenary
22:00 - 23:30Brunnhilde - DJanes NightCulture